According to a new study, those who regularly eat tree nuts including almonds, cashews, walnuts, pistachios and chestnuts have lower triglyceride levels (less fat in the blood), as well as lower blood glucose levels compared to those in the control group that did not eat nuts.
The study from Canadian-based researchers found a “modest decrease” in both blood fat and blood sugar among those who included nuts in their diets.
“Eating tree nuts is good for lowering risk for heart disease and other health problems such as diabetes and strokes,” said Dr. John Sievenpiper, a physician at St Michael’s Hospital in Toronto.
The research was based on 49 randomized controlled studies with 2,000 overall participants and recently appeared in the British Medical Journal.
Sievenpiper suggested eating 50 grams of nuts a day as a snack, preferably one that replaces a refined carbohydrate, which has a negative effect on both triglycerides and blood glucose.
A previous study, also at St. Michael Hospital, found that eating nuts every day could help control type 2 diabetes as well as prevent complications including stroke, amputations and eye problems.
Nuts are a main component of the Mediterranean diet. Which also features fish, vegetables, seeds and other unsaturated fats such as olive oil . Researchers have previously said not only could this prevent type 2 diabetes by 40 percent, but also control the symptoms of those who have already been diagnosed.
Echoing the health benefits of nuts, a 2013 study that appeared in the New England Journal of Medicine found that those who ate a handful of nuts a day had a 20 percent less likely risk of dying from common ailments that those who never ate nuts.
Tree nut consumption has also been linked to a lower risk of obesity, according to researchers at California’s Loma Linda University.